- Students at Ghent University created ELLeN-inspired multimedia products
In December 2023, Master students of Gender and Diversity at Ghent University presented their multimedia products on the topics of ‘neurodiversity and neurodiversity and learning’. Students collaborated with lived experience experts in their work over several months.
- Virtual teacher education workshop hosted by UMBC’s TESOL program
On December 7th, Jules Buendgens-Kosten held a workshop on “Neurodiversity in the Classroom: Universal Design for Learning”, hosted by the TESOL program at University of Maryland, Baltimore County. During this 1-hour event, attended by 31 local educators from different subject disciplines, they drew on ELLeN educational materials (“IO1”) and on ELLeN interviews (“IO2”) to introduce key ideas related to neurodiversity and Universal Design for Learning, and to present the ELLeN project more generally.
- Final Multiplier Event
ELLeN held their final Multiplier Event on November 27th and 28th as part of a symposium sponsored jointly between the Institute for Diversity Studies (Link: https://div.kuwi.tu-dortmund.de/) and the Dortmund Competence Center for Teacher Education and Research (Link: https://dokoll.tu-dortmund.de/ ) at the TU Dortmund. Additional funding was provided in part by the “Stifterverband” as part of DiTAIL, and through a generous donation by the “Friends of the TU Dortmund”.
Over the course of three presentations, members of the ELLeN Team shared different aspects of the work that has transpired over the last three years and that will be disseminated in the coming weeks and months. Caro Blume offered an overview of ELLeN and highlighted its relationship to the theme of the symposium: Teaching and learning about digitality and diversity in (foreign) language teacher education. Raúl García, and Pasquale Uferkamp illustratively shared information about the process and products developed for teacher educators and professionals looking to extend their knowledge of neurodiversity and English language learning. This was followed by insights into the collected data, with Michelle Proyer and Geert van Hove reporting on how pre-service teachers involved in participatory research grappled with the tensions of teaching inclusively in systems that are not always inclusive. Rieke Dieckhoff then joined Raúl García to discuss the findings from descriptive and qualitative data, likewise revealing pre-service teachers’ perspectives on ELLeN-related activities and content.
The symposium was attended by members of the TU Dortmund community, as well as external visitors who braved the weather and related travel delays to join the sessions. The questions and comments by the members of the audience demonstrated an appreciation for the complexity of preparing pre-service teachers for challenging educational environments, and equally, the importance of doing so.
Conference proceedings are planned for publication in 2024.
- Final transnational project meeting in Vienna
The ELLeN projects last transnational project meeting took place in Vienna on November 13th and 14th. In person and via hybrid collaboration the consortiuum worked on finalizing project outcomes.
- Two ELLeN multiplier events in one week
This week saw two multiplier events in just a few days. First, on November 13th 2023, a hybrid event in Vienna, focused on inquiry-based learning and the “lessons learned” of the project and featuring exciting guest speaker Katta Spiel, who shared their research on neurodiversity and games with the audience.
Then, on the 16th, an online event with a focus on our forthcoming book of interviews. Carolyn Blume described how inquiry based learning – specifically interviews with neurodivergent individuals and stakeholders in inclusive education – were integrated in teacher education seminars. Rieke Dieckhoff introduced the audience to the editing process that turned these interviews into a forthcoming book. Geert van Hove shared shared some conclusions we drew from this project. Special highlight was the talk by James Docherty, a university student who had been interviewed for this project, who candidly shared his experiences at school and his experiences as an interviewee in the ELLeN project.